Generation X and Y investors are pushing for bar on traditional brokerage offerings by demanding the best tools, savvy interfaces and intuitive workflows for their online investment experience.
Unlike the more brand-loyal boomer generation, Gen X and Y are marked for their willingness to jump around to more tech-savvy competitors, leaving institutions scrambling to keep pace with their online investing capabilities and provide more convenient services.
On Wednesday, financial technology provider Scivantage announced the launch of a next-generation platform, Scivantage Investor, for institutions to meet those complex online investment needs. The platform offers flexible user-centered design architecture and a number of features institutions can employ to stay on the cutting edge.
[For more on next-generation preferences, read: Expect More Banks to Adopt Self-Directed Brokerage Channels ]
Notable features include "Quick Trade," which allows a user to trade from anywhere on the site. "Tagging and User Personalization" creates customized data views and tag specific records based on usersâ terms, creating a personalized screen view. "Portfolio At-a-Glance" displays aggregated data sets across accounts in a single view, giving users performance perspectives and the ability to monitor their asset allocation across multiple portfolios, according to the press release.
Data visualization is a key trend," explains Chris Psaltos, VP of product management at Scivantage. "While the ability to drill down is important, heat maps and graphics summarize data to give users an idea of the status with just a glance"
To help keep existing clients and attract Generation X and Y traders banks have been challenged to deliver a more personalized, online investment experience to their clients. While eager to do so, they also want to meet the needs without compromising their brands.
While users can be said to care more about whether a feature works than its design, Psaltos says many banks are trying to make sure the functions don't supersede the brand.
[To hear about how financial firms are managing their complex data architectures, attend the Future of the Financial Services Data Center panel at Interop 2014 in Las Vegas, March 31-April 4. You can also REGISTER FOR INTEROP HERE.]
"While flexibility has always been a core capability for Scivantage products, one of the big challenges for Scivantage has traditionally been managing expectations around what the application should look like from a branding perspective rather than from a functional or usability perspective," he explains. "It is more about creating a unified interface and look and feel than it is about any particular feature. By incorporating User Centered Design methodology, we are leaving the usability to the users. With that said, Scivantage Investor's new architecture provides even more flexibility for clients to address the front-end design and brand challenges.â
A Full Ecosystem
The firms involved in the active investor space are in an arms race competing for the lucrative user. They are competing for younger and affluent clients with the links of Think or Swim or TradeMonster, giving brokerages a desire to adopt technology more readily than perhaps second tier "wait and see" groups.
From Psaltos' perspective, the back end of most financial trading institutions hasn't changed in years, and when they do change it's about pricing and offering, not so much about the technology offered. "Our goal has been to help clients create a full ecosystem of tools that gives them the ability to create a great, unified user experience that is "on brand" and will attract new investors and drive the business." "We're excited about this launch," he adds. "There's certainly been a large amount of time and investment into getting Scivantage Investor where it is today. We're thrilled about taking it to the next level and getting clients onto the full next-generation platform."